House of Raeford Farms, Rose Hill, N.C., will be phasing out its commodity turkey growing and slaughter operations in eastern N.C., to focus its resources on House of Raeford turkeyincreasing chicken production volumes and expanding its fully cooked turkey and chicken product lines over the next 2-3 years.

This decision will result in closure of its Rose Hill, N.C., turkey hatchery, Raeford, N.C., turkey slaughter plant, and turkey growing operations in eastern N.C., over the next 4-6 months. The company will continue to operate its Raeford, N.C., cook plant and will expand its production of fresh ready-to-cook chicken, tray-pack ground turkey and chicken, battered and breaded nuggets and patties, and fully cooked turkey and chicken products.

“We intend to further expand the chicken business over the next 2-3 years, so that our increased chicken volume will replace the turkey production we are phasing out,” says Bob Johnson, chief executive officer. “This expansion will provide opportunities for as many of our growers and employees as possible to transition into the chicken business.”

House of Raeford will proactively assist all employees affected by this decision by offering severance packages, priority employment opportunities at other plants and community transition services such as job placement counseling and retraining. Management will also begin working with individual turkey growers to determine interest in transitioning their turkey farm operations into chicken operations.

“We’re grateful to the employees and growers who have been an active part of our turkey operation, and we are committed to helping each one of them during this transition,” says Johnson.